Rainbow at shoreline

The Massachusetts ME/CFS & FM Association, a 501(c)3 founded in 1985, exists to meet the needs of patients with ME (Myalgic Encephalomyelitis), CFS (Chronic Fatigue Syndrome) or FM (Fibromyalgia), their families and loved ones. The Massachusetts ME/CFS & FM Association works to educate health-care providers and the general public regarding these severely-disabling physical illnesses. We also support patients and their families and advocate for more effective treatment and research.

Sunday Conversations - February 2022, Applying for Social Security Disability

"Applying for Social Security Disability Benefits if You Have ME/CFS or Fibromyalgia”

The presentation is also relevant to Long Covid and Chronic Lyme Disease.

Sunday, February 20, 2022, 4 p.m. ET 

The Conversation discusses when and how to apply for benefits, qualification requirements, the application process, and how to medically-document your disability – as well as how to optimize your chances for approval.

An experienced disability and worker’s compensation attorney discusses the role of an attorney in the disability process and the need for legal representation at hearings. A parent of an ME/CFS patient will discuss how he assisted his daughter win her benefits.

Links for this program

Playlist 
Full event video 
Part 1: Applying for Disability 
Part 2: Patient Experience 
Part 3: An Attorney's Role  
Part 4: Q&A   

Speaker slides

More resources 

Featured speakers

Atty. Ron Belluso, attorney specializing in disability at Keches Law Group, and a MassME Board member. Ron has successfully represented many ME/CFS and other disabled patients through the disability process and at Administrative Hearings and is a member of the National Organization of Social Security Claimant’s Representatives (NOSSCR).

Ken Casanova, MassME member and Disability Counselor. Ken is the primary author of the Association’s Disability Handbook, “How to Apply for Social Security if You Have ME/CFS,” and has guided nearly 100 people through the disability process over the years. He has been the Association's president twice, and has been a social worker, community organizer, and legislative advocate.

Bob Robitaille, MassME member and volunteer. Bob assisted his daughter win her Disability benefits and now provides guidance to others as a member of our Patient Services team.

Moderator: Karin Dove, MassME Patient Services Volunteer 

 


 

In Memoriam - Ronald G. Tompkins

Ron_Tompkins.jpgIt is with great sadness that we learned of the sudden passing of Ron Tompkins, MD, ScD. The Massachusetts ME/CFS & FM Association was fortunate to be able to collaborate on a number of projects with Ron, and he was always extraordinarily generous with advice and guidance. The Massachusetts ME/CFS community has lost a strong ally and a good friend.

Read more: In Memoriam - Ronald G. Tompkins


Sunday Conversations with MassME

Sunday Conversations

A monthly speaker series
3rd Sunday of each month at 4 p.m. ET
Free and open to everyone

“Sunday Conversations with MassME” is a monthly speaker series with discussion on a wide variety of topics. These sessions are appropriate for patients, family members/caregivers, and health care professionals. Sunday Conversations take place via Zoom on the 3rd Sunday of each month at 4 p.m. ET, and are free and open to anyone. Presentations are recorded for later viewing. Registration is required. 

 

Fibromyalgia was the topic for May. Featured speaker was Paul Monach, M.D., Chief of the Rheumatology Section in the Boston VA Healthcare System, and an Associate Professor at Harvard Medical School.

Video links:

Playlist: https://youtube.com/playlist?list=PLz31KwoUbYrE9Uk71UjIDLGy2v6QVjwcN
Full event: https://youtu.be/cJxJLs1zLWM
Part 1-Fibromyalgia overview: https://youtu.be/PXkznGEg0ak
Part 2-Patient voices: https://youtu.be/IIFwzB-1CJQ
Part 3-Q&A: https://youtu.be/Ej7Ozno4oHo

Slides

 

June 19 program is "A whole-person health approach to Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome – Lessons for Post-COVID conditions." 

Featured speaker is Dr. Dr. Maria Vera Nunez, MD, MSBI

Dr. Vera is a Board-certified Internal Medicine and Integrative Medicine physician, a Certified Functional Medicine Practitioner, and has a Master of Science degree in Medical Informatics.

She was an Assistant Professor at Nova Southeastern University’s Institute for Neuro-Immune Medicine, a national referral center for ME/CFS cases, for 7 years. Currently, she is an attending
physician at the Whole Psychiatry and Brain Recovery Center in Maryland and a Research Assistant Professor at the Medical University of South Carolina.

Register here.

 

Links to recordings, slides, and other resources from past events:

"Fibromyalgia" May 15, 2022

"Working with Your Healthcare Provider" April 24, 2022

"A Functional Medicine Approach to Complex Chronic Illnesses" March 20, 2022

"Applying for Social Security Disability if you have ME/CFS or Fibromyalgia" February 20 2022

"Physical and Occupational Therapy for ME/CFS and Similar Chronic Illnesses" January 16, 2022


 

Notice about names

The Massachusetts ME/CFS & FM Association would like to clarify the use of the various acronyms for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS), Chronic Fatigue & Immune Dysfunction Syndrome (CFIDS) and  Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME) on this site. When we generate our own articles on the illness, we will refer to it as ME/CFS, the term now generally used in the United States. When we are reporting on someone else’s report, we will use the term they use. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) and other federal agencies, including the CDC, are currently using ME/CFS. 

Massachusetts ME/CFS & FM Association changed its name in July, 2018, to reflect this consensus.